Cricket 19: One Week to Go!

In just one week’s time we can all have our hands on a copy of Big Ant’s latest console cricket game… Cricket 19! Could you get a more self-explanatory title?

I’ve scripted a few articles about the game before it’s even been released but now is nearly the time to get playing again. I stopped playing Ashes Cricket sometime ago and had stored my monitor and PS4 away. Big Ant cricket games are literally the sole reason for me having such items and have been a core of my blogging efforts. Quite where in my tiny house I’m going to set up game central remains uncertain!

I’ve been there from the beginning. From Don Bradman Cricket 14 to 17 to Ashes Cricket and now Cricket 19. I’ve played some great matches and really enjoyed the realness of the game. I’ve also been there submitting bug reports at ridiculous o’clock. Not this time eh Big Ant?!

I only wish that I could devote more time to the game but family, work and fresh air are required in small doses at least.

Will I finish the career that I commence?

Will I finish the Test league that I start, let alone ODI and T20I leagues?

Probably not!

Whatever I do though, come acing an epic successful run chase as England or being run out first ball in Career Mode, you can read all about it here.

Stay tuned folks because I’m padding up and putting my gloves on!

Cricket 19: Padding Up!

Big Ant’s latest cricketing effort titled Cricket 19 is due for release later this month, tuesday 28th to be exact. Button pushing fingers at the ready!

https://sillypointcricket.com/2019/04/18/cricket-19-release-date-confirmed/

https://sillypointcricket.com/2019/03/16/cricket-19-what-will-you-do/

Now if I was a single, unemployed, rich man, I’d be looking forward to dedicating a lot of my days (And nights!) to hunkering down, stockpiling on snacks, never leaving the house and dedicating as much time as possible to the game before I got an immense headache. Sound familiar!

Unfortunately, no not unfortunately but realistically I have a wife and two children, work 32-40 hours per week and am not rich. I can’t dedicate every second of every day to Cricket 19. That’s a problem because there’s a heck of a lot to do in the game. What I do have is one morning per week whilst eldest daughter is at nursery and possibly friday and saturday nights to chase cricketing glory. So what am I going to do?

Obviously I’d like to pursue a career. First up as on previous Big Ant cricket games, I’d like to do an as true to life career as possible. By that I mean as a virtual me, the player has my name, looks like me, has my real life batting and bowling handedness/arm and style and commences his career somewhere local whilst trying to gain a contract at Yorkshire and ultimately play for England. That in itself is a big dedication to go all the way to regular international player over a ten or fifteen year period. I do think that in Career Mode I will be a batting orientated player. It’s just too much to be bowling as well and I find it harder to get in the groove and maintain form when batting. I haven’t played Ashes for sometime so will do some net practice before commencing my career. If the difficulty levels are similar to previous games (Rookie, Amateur, Pro, Veteran, Legend) then I’ll probably look to play on veteran level. Pro can be just a little too easy but Legend too hard. The new Perks system implemented on Career Mode looks extremely promising. I’d love to do some careers as my daughters, one of them I’ve got down as a spin bowler or my fast bowler nephew but I don’t want to end up with a few unfinished careers.

The other thing that I’d like to do is create Test and ODI leagues as I’ve done previously. I’m really not fussed about T20I. I prefer to be able to bat for long periods and make big scores as well as enjoying bowling long spells and having to work hard for wickets. That’s been the real beauty of previous Big Ant games, the realness of having to dig deep to earn your rewards. Though I won’t bowl in Career I enjoy doing so in Tests in particular. As with Career I don’t want to end up with unfinished leagues so I’ll keep them small, maybe just five or six teams, home and away followed by a final. I like to select some lesser nations so Canada and Nepal etc, bring it on! I should probably mention that I’ll be playing as England and will likely call up players such as Rob Keogh, Harry Brook and Will Jacks amongst others to compliment to England regulars. That’s another huge asset of Big Ant’s games, The customisation and fantasy elements, you make the England (Or whichever) team as you like personnel wise, as well as kit and stadium wise.

I can’t say that scenario mode holds great appeal to me. I’d rather just play Test and ODIs and therefore arrive upon my own scenarios in those matches.

The online feedback from the demo has been extremely positive particularly around the visual aspect as well as the added depth to Career Mode. There’ll always be a bit of hesitancy from me as Big Ant have had their problems when it’s come to polishing previous titles. “Brilliant but broken games” is the phrase that I’ve used. Fingers crossed that this time they’ve had pest control in early and rid themselves of any bugs!

I’ll be sure to post match reviews and Career updates complete with images as with previous games here on my site so keep your eyes peeled.

https://sillypointcricket.com/2018/03/30/ashes-cricket-ps4-career-mode-2024-season/

https://sillypointcricket.com/2017/12/24/ashes-cricket-ps4-global-test-league-like-a-rash/

https://sillypointcricket.com/2017/11/18/ashes-cricket-ps4-slogmaster-from-zero-to-ninety-in-a-matter-of-seconds/

https://sillypointcricket.com/2017/10/28/don-bradman-cricket-17-best-of/

Please let me know what you intend to do on Cricket 19.

20,000!

20,000 seems like a number worth celebrating so thank you for helping me reach said milestone of hits.

My articles involving the entire evolution of Big Ant’s console cricket games: Don Bradman Cricket 14 and 17, Ashes Cricket and Cricket 19 have been the mainstay of my views courtesy of search engines.

Posts on another cricket game but away from console: Cricket Captain, have also been critical to my amassing of views.

A particular interest for many in Haseeb Hameed has also helped me gain plenty of views!

Screen Shot 2019-04-18 at 20.02.36

My homeland, the United Kingdom, is the run away leader for me in terms of hits with India then USA in the silver and bronze medal positions respectively.

https://sillypointcricket.com/2017/01/25/don-bradman-cricket-17-career-stagnation/

The above post has been my most discovered.

With a bumper summer of cricket ahead and plenty of Cricket 19 posts on the way, maybe I can double 20k in less time than the three years it’s taken me to reach this point in the first place!

Lythless!

Adam Lyth will always hold a place in my heart, if not for the highest but for the best ever innings that I’ve played on a computer game…

https://sillypointcricket.com/2017/03/09/a-lyth-less-ordinary/

His 120 in a ODI against the mighty Nepal on Don Bradman Cricket 17 may have been in a losing cause but was a mighty fine knock.

Unfortunately, having spent a Telegraph Fantasy Cricket captaincy transfer on him, I would’ve welcomed better than a duck (-20).

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/scorecard/ECKO44959

He better take some catches and wickets is all that I can say!

Ashes Cricket (PS4): Career Mode – Limited Overs, Limited Success!

IMG_3800

Following the decent start made to my career in the three-day game, I was looking forward to backing it up in the limited overs campaigns.

IMG_3802

However I endured a difficult time in the one-day matches. This was despite scoring my runs at a modern-day strike-rate of 164.28.

5, 6, 11, 16 & 31

No they’re not this week’s lottery numbers! They’re my 2018 fifty-over batting performances. In truth I just didn’t apply myself properly and only had myself to blame for finishing the season with a paltry average of 13.80.

IMG_3803

I did at least finish the campaign with an enterprising innings of 31 from just twelve deliveries against York, only succumbing in the final over when playing for the team and not my average!

My team Leeds finished a disappointing 5th place in the league.

IMG_3805

Having underwhelmed in the one-dayers, I found myself quite understandably demoted from position four to five in the batting order for the T20 matches. Though I again failed to record a half-century, I was pleased with my performances. Often coming in with only a few overs remaining, I registered scores of 32, 6, 31*, 24 & 4 at a whopping strike rate of 255.26!

In a repeat of the one-day affairs we finished in a disappointing fifth place in the league and so failed to qualify for the finals-day.

IMG_3806

Come the 2019 campaign, I’ll look to get back on the horse in the three-day season. I’ll need to readjust my mindset to batting for long periods of time and turning some of those 90s into big hundreds in order to gain selection for a professional outfit. Hopefully I can improve on my moderate start to limited overs cricket too.

Big Ant Studios have added added depth to their career mode in this, their latest cricket game. In Don Bradman Cricket 17 you only played T20 matches at club level. On Ashes Cricket once again you find yourself playing in a regionalised league, in my case Northern England but the structure is no longer three rounds or so of exclusive Twenty20 cricket. With six teams in our league we played each team once in the three-day stuff, then again in both one-dayers and T20s with finals-days in place for both the one-day and T20 tournaments. It’s a much better way of structuring things. The three-day encounters allow you to potentially construct big scores and can have exciting climaxes as teams do seem to play to win and not just settle for what might seem easy draws. Not just slogging away in T20 matches is both far more enjoyable and provides extra layers of immersion to the game.

Regarding statistics, the club level stuff is all lumped together so that when you walk out to bat for your maiden one-day appearance the stats on screen show your three-day figures then combine from that moment forward. It’d be great if the three formats were separated but that is the case once you make it to professional level with individual statistics for First Class, List A and T20 as well as Test, ODI and T20I so it’s not the end of the world whilst plugging away on the amateur circuit.

I’ve found the Northern Cup a little spin dominated but I guess that’s fair enough, particularly in the shorter formats of the game. There’s added delicacy and realism to hitting some of the shots. A dabbed guide through gully or a straight six feels so rewarding as does occasionally playing through the shot too soon, getting underneath the ball and being caught. I’ve been bowled and edged behind to spin when I probably changed my mind during the delivery’s flight and whilst it’s frustrating to get out it feels genuine! I’ve performed better against pace bowling but the movement of some of the deliveries is awesome. The opposition have held every catch I’ve offered.

Yes I experienced a dodgy stumping, fell victim to a back-to-the-ball catch and the statistics could do with a little cosmetics but my experience of Ashes Cricket so far is an encouraging one. I do hope that it takes me only two or three years to get a professional gig though and not five or six! Offering a reminder, I’m playing on pro level, medium difficulty and medium selection difficulty. Oh and not forgetting the new buttons, yes they’re simpler but do still provide enough variety to retain depth and skill to batting in the game. I haven’t yet bowled outside of nets/training.

Disclaimer: I’m currently working on creating Test, ODI and T20I leagues in which to play as England and provide reports on but am waiting for some of the on-disc international teams to be complimented with real players.

Ashes Cricket (PS4): Career Mode – Slogmaster/From Zero to Ninety in a Matter of Seconds!*

IMG_3771

*By seconds I mean upto two hours.

Start as we mean to go on! Yes that’s right, I ducked on debut but did make a stoic second innings four against the mighty Hull. Only by getting both my mind and fingers crossed between classic and standard buttons did I come unstuck. It’s the usual six local teams league structure but Career Mode now incorporates Three-Day, One-Day and T20 cricket making it impressively more immersive. I’ve signed up with Leeds and as well as Hull will enjoy days out to Bradford, Scarborough, Sheffield and York, flood defences provided!

IMG_3772

Against Sheffield I responded by reaching 19 before both a change in the commentary box (Thanks Mel Jones!) and the introduction of spin, immediately combined to distract me and send shivers down my spine. I’d fallen against spin in both innings on debut and followed suit here too.

IMG_3773

Come the second innings and with the field up, I launched a huge straight six early in the piece. It was my first career maximum and I struck another the following day. The bowling attack encountered was a challenging mix of both pace and spin as well as right and left-arm.

IMG_3775

I reached my maiden fifty, with a little help from my Kookaburra Ghost, at more than a run a ball. The sweep shot was particularly effective for me though in truth it often ended up being executed more like an out and out slog!. We’ll take the runs any way they come though!

IMG_3776

My avatar has ended up not looking particularly like me but my teeth have had a nice shine, although I appear to have an extra head growing out of my right shoulder. This is a concern because it could effect my batting!

IMG_3777

Whether or not either my glove or bat actually made contact with the ball that was caught behind off yet more spin to end my epic second innings inversion of my first innings score remains unclear. Just look at that crack. Off the richter scale in Yorkshire!

IMG_3778

Of course there’s no DRS at this level. I’m not bitter at the decision though, only proud of my innings of 91. Of course a further nine runs would have been welcome but though I could barely open my eyes as I left the crease, deep down I know that my career best knock puts me in good stead to attain my career ambitions.

Big Ant appear to have made huge strides with their follow-up to the Don Bradman Games and I can’t emphasise how much better club (Amateur) level is for having two innings matches. I’ll keep you up to date with my career travails as I begin the quest for Yorkshire and England recognition. For the record: I’m middling every difficulty level, that’s pro level (So 3rd out of 5) and medium specifically on the batting and bowling front as well as selection difficulty and am playing on a PlayStation4 console.